At first I really liked the game and the direction it was taking. It felt like a Silent Hill game. I liked that the town is a little more free-roam, and the game is not so linear; what with the side quests, and story options (kill or spare). The game features multiple endings, all of which are easy to get,; but require multiple play throughs (classic silent hill). I think the scenery was very good, and the scares and shocks are plentiful. That's the good.
As for the bad...
I don't know how this game got approved for production.
The game lags all the time. It feels like I was playing a massively multilayer on line game with a bad connection, it lags so much! This should have been a huge red flag in testing.
Also I hate how the game is designed so that you're gonna die lots of times, but that's OK to the game. You'll just continue from the auto save moments before. I hated this. I hate dieing; but in this game, there's not much avoiding it on first run through. There are alot of parts where you are running though a maze like area whith a distructive void chasing you. If you chose the wrong way or move too slow, you die. Also there are slide parts, where you have too steer left or right and avoid instant death, or balance beams feature constantly where you can fall to your death. Another horrible thing is that there are points in the story where you HAVE lose all your inventory (ammo & health packs).
This is not a very good survival horror. With the losses of inventory, why bother hording supplies at all?! And the constant auto saves, make it so every bit of the game is just trial and error till I get to the next (very close) checkpoint.
Lastly the game just ended before I was ready. I got to the last area of the town, and did one innocuous thing, next thing I know, all my inventory is gone, and I'm at the final battle area with no way to head back to the main town, and do all the side quests I was engaged in.
Silent Hill Downpour goes back to the more traditional Silent Hill games adding more mind blowing puzzles than Silent Hill Homecoming had. The action and fighting difficulty level definitely dropped in this game, so I take that as they wanted to go back towards the first few Silent Hills. The game has amazing graphics and plenty of frightening creatures that the Silent Hill franchise is best known for. The game also includes a very freaky twist at the end of the game, but I won't spoil it. You will just have to play to find it! I highly recommend this to any fans of Silent Hill or survival horror in general.
Silent Hill Downpour is better than I expected it to be. I'll get to it, this game is a rental unless you are an absolute fan of the SH franchise. The graphics are best described as early current generation. Meaning it resembles some gaming graphics of the games that were released when the 360 and PS3 were first released. Still better than Wii graphics. The fog is has no dramatic effect for me. You run through with no cool particle effects. The graphics represent classic Silent Hill.
The sounds and soundtrack is trademark Silent Hill. Ominous tones set the environment. The radio crackle when monsters are nearby.
The combat is clunky at times but not so bad that it detracts so much from the gameplay. The puzzles are predictable if you have played many adventure games. Need a key, crank, or tool? Explore the nooks and crannies before heading over to find yourself stuck. Once you find a crank, find a key, find a tool you'll unlock the puzzle before you even come up on it. The usual turn three times and you solved it.
The game isn't as horrible as IGN says. Don't get all jaded by Uncharted 3. Its good in its own right.